The former head of pipeline-corrosion monitoring for BP in Alaska refused to testify under oath Thursday as outraged lawmakers grilled company officials over the causes of a massive oil spill earlier this year.
Richard C. Woollam [right], who was transferred to BP's Houston offices in 2005 amid concerns that he intimidated potential whistleblowers, invoked the Fifth Amendment of the Constitution in refusing to answer all questions from a House subcommittee.
Contrast that with this statement from the BP Web site:
Wherever we operate, we strive to minimize any damage to the environment through the full life cycle of each site: from careful assessments on access through to responsible decommissioning and remediation on exit.And this one:
In all our activities we seek to display some unchanging, fundamental qualities – integrity, honest dealing, treating everyone with respect and dignity, striving for mutual advantage and contributing to human progress.I don't mean to beat up on BP. This is just an example of the adage that if you decide to go way out in front, you'd better be prepared to get knocked back. BP did a great job of getting out in front of other oil companies with its responsibility and sustainability message ... but it didn't cover the fundamentals, and has not handled this crisis particularly well.
The same adage holds true for politicians, whether its George Bush going out long on the War on Terror, or the Dem leadership, going out long on cut and run. Bush is (finally!) handling the knock-back well, and that means we'll see the Dems getting knocked around quite a bit in the next couple months. They probably will not respond well at all.
Related Tags: Politics, BP, Environment